This Is Only the Beginning

Not everyone survives their time in the shadows. These dark moments hit us at different times, often when we’re least ready for them. Some of us are only equipped to try to dig ourselves out, and we later find that we’ve been on a slow but steady descent down a chasm of our own design.

Carving a path back up can feel impossible, and yet giving up is the only other option. As far as we know, we only get one shot at this life, and we each must make the most of our individual attributes and strengths. For a long time, I wasn’t sure I wanted to see old age; I thought there was no overcoming the painful and exhausting hand I’d been dealt, and my spirit had become so tired.

I’ve worn many hats and lived a few different roles. Throughout all of them, I’ve had an overwhelming need to share—ideas, information, observations. I’ve written books and worked for media outlets, and that’s where I’ve felt most fulfilled. But throughout the bulk of my life, I’ve also fought crushing darkness.

I had yet to realize the shadows looming all around me were merely an illusion, and that I was the only person who could overcome it. Even more, I’d failed to understand I’d had the power to rise above it all this time.

I used to live in such darkness. I’d adapted to so many lies that I’d convinced myself the shadow I’d become trapped beneath was sunshine. I’d clung to the misguided belief that complacency and comfort were the same as happiness. I thought I understood my place in this world, and I was good with it.

I’d been so wrong, and the mistake nearly cost me everything.

It took coming dangerously close to death for me to finally see the light, to find that path toward clarity and peace, and now I’m never going back. I realize now that I had so many more choices than I’d thought, so much more power in my hands. We all do, even when we aren’t able to see it.

My journey may not be the same as yours, but I’d like to share some of the steps I’ve taken and lessons I’ve learned along the way. May you find peace and joy in your life as well.

Happiness is subjective. It’s also a choice—and something we have to work at. If someone had tried to convince me of this truth a few years ago, I would’ve undoubtedly offered a few unkind words on the matter. I would not have been able to appreciate the role I’d played in the life I’d forged.

I had to learn the truth through crushing heartache, deep introspection and a few giant leaps, but I finally found what I was searching for.

A new chapter recently opened in my life. The journey has been scary at times, and it hasn’t been easy, but I think I finally know my place in this world. Knowledge is power, and we all have so much to share. I hope my contribution makes a difference.

Thanks for joining me for the ride.

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